Pumpkin Muffins with Extra Pumpkin
Although they did not start out well these muffins are surprisingly good.
I intended to make this American recipe*. The muffins have a cream cheese filling inside them and (unusually for me) I had a packet of cream cheese in my fridge so they seemed like the perfect post-Halloween bake.
The first mistake I made was in thinking the packet was 300g. It was 200g so I was 24g short. no matter I thought, I will use a small egg and it'll be just fine.
The second mistake I made was to assume that cream cheese was the same the world over. This is the stuff I had. Evidently this is not the same as American cream cheese because when I beat it up with the egg and some sugar I ended up with soup and not something I could spoon into a half-filled muffin cup.
Throwing caution to the wind I added the other egg to the cream cheese mixture, measured out the dry ingredients and mixed the two together.
Then I made my third mistake. I measured out the required amount of pumpkin purée and stirred it into the batter. Not wet enough, so I added the rest of the pumpkin -probably another cup. Now it was too wet. I decided to leave out the oil.
The batter was very yellow.
I made the crumble topping without any mistakes but I did substitute walnuts for pecans.
They were very dense, almost fudgy, extremely moist and absolutely gorgeous. The crunchy top was delicious. With so much pumpkin in them I'm sure one muffin must count as one of your five a day :o)
*The ingredients are in cups but you can switch to metric.
Creamy Chicken and Pumpkin Pasta.
Despite the over-pumpkinned muffins I still had pumpkin to use up. I also had a couple of chicken breasts in the freezer which needed to be stretched to feed five. This simple pasta sauce was a huge hit with my family.
I roasted the pumpkin first. I sprinkled it with some olive oil and salt and pepper before roasting it in a hot oven for half an hour. I cooked the chicken at the same time.
I cooked a couple of crushed cloves of garlic very very gently in some olive oil. in retrospect it would have been better to have roasted the garlic with the pumpkin. I added a little fresh sage, just a couple of leaves, finely chopped. Sage is a bit of a bully so don't overdo it. Rosemary or thyme would work too.
I generally have a small carton of double cream in the fridge. 85p buys you 300ml which will add a little luxury to at least one meal, depending how many you are feeding.
I used cheddar, but gruyère or a blue cheese would be lovely in this dish.
The pumpkin melted almost completely into the sauce making it velvety and luscious.
Finally I stirred in a handful of chopped walnuts. They added texture and their flavour went well with the other ingredients.
I tasted the sauce to see if it was seasoned enough and then stirred cooked pasta into the sauce.
Definitely one of the best things I have done with leftover pumpkins.
For more pumpkin ideas and a slightly different perspective on using up your Halloween leftovers visit Coffee Lady :o)
Here is my monthly sampler for October.
You can also find it on the sampler page under my banner picture.